How Do I Stop Uninvited People from Coming to My Wedding?

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Photo by Debbie Neff Photography

Q: There are several people on my guest list that I just I found out are inviting other people, even though I never gave them a plus one. Our budget and guest list is limited and we cannot afford to have uninvited guests! What should I do?- Jackie

Ummm, what?! This is TOTALLY not acceptable. I’m going to assume that these guests who are inviting other people have either never been to a wedding before, or were confused and thought they had a plus one. Let’s give them the benefit of the doubt and assume the latter.

First off do not let another second go by without reaching out to these wedding guests taking the party planning into their own hands. E-mail, call, or text them (your choice as you are having to go out of your way to do this…so do whatever is easiest for you), and politely tell them the situation. Here’s an example of what you can say:

Hi Mark. We are so excited to see you at the wedding! I wanted to let you know that while I really wish we could extend a plus one to you, we have an extremely limited guest list and have to ask that you attend solo. We are so sorry if this changes any of your plans. We really hope we get to celebrate with you!

This is a nice way of saying, “Come alone or don’t come.” Hey, it sounds harsh, but it’s true. Unless you’re having a backyard wedding party with unlimited space and food, most weddings come with a per-guest charge, which means their uninvited friend is going to cost you money that you might not have.

Now, perhaps something on the wedding invitation confused your guests and they thought they had a plus one? Though this is hard to imagine because the ONLY way a guest should assume they have a plus one is when the wedding envelope is addressed to: Mark Jones and Guest. If Mark’s envelope doesn’t say that, he should automatically assume that he does not have a plus one. And if he’s in doubt, he needs to ask you or your partner.

So, are there any situations where you really should allow a guest to have a plus one if they are invited? Yes! We think that if a guest is in a serious relationship that they should be extended a plus one. This applies to your friend’s, your spouse’s friends, and your family members.

Regardless of the situation these guests should have absolutely been in touch with you to either clarify what the plus one situation was or to ask you personally if it would be OK for them to invite a significant other you might not have been aware of. Inviting guests on their own is never OK.

Good luck Jackie and let us know how it turns out!

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